With the announcement of their new single, Hookworms are set to release the perfect encapsulation of everything that forthcoming second studio album The Hum is set to be. ‘On Leaving’ takes the blueprint of debut album Pearl Mystic – proto-punk, garage rock, Washington DC hardcore, 80’s British spacerock – and further stamps it with the band’s seal.
Listen to “On Leaving” here.
Described by the band’s bassist MB as their attempt at “a really minimal two-note rager”, ‘On Leaving’ is six minutes of controlled power, the muscular drumming of new drummer JN gradually clambering up the notches through each repetition of the Leeds’ five-piece’s growling repeato-rock. Refusing to simply rely on a cyclical riff, the track is a testament to the subtle tangents that Hookworms constantly play off each other, keyboardist and producer MJ draping backing call and response melodies across the track, pushing onto more pop plains.
The Hum (released 10th November on Weird World) comes eighteen months after the band’s debut album Pearl Mystic – a record that steadily went on to become one of 2013’s most impactful breakout statements. Even more ferocious and uncompromising than its predecessor and yet more melodic and focused than the band have ever recorded, The Hum further cements the band’s status as a vital force in British independent music.
“We were writing Pearl Mystic to an audience in the same way your diary has an audience”, says guitarist SS. “It’s written to one but if no one ever reads it that’s not a big deal. This time round though we knew we had a really clear audience, so The Hum is really about different freedoms and constraints – with Pearl Mystic the possibilities were almost too vast, this time around we had a much clearer idea of what the record should be like and that became freeing because we didn’t need to worry about its direction so much.”
That word “free” is a good way to approach The Hum, a record that could only be made by a band in total command of their personality. “It’s like that bit on Fugazi’s Instrument documentary where Brendan Canty says that a jam they’ve got sounds ‘good, but not Fugazi’ ”, says MJ – “we sound more like Hookworms rather than anyone else on this record.”
Hookworms will tour this Autumn:
Saturday 25th October Birmingham All Year’s Leaving Festival, Hare & Hounds
Sunday 26th October Sheffield Queen’s Social Club
Monday 27th October Liverpool Liverpool Music Week, Kazimier
Tuesday 28th October London Tufnell Park Dome
Wednesday 29th October Cardiff Clwb Ifor Bach
Thursday 30th October Bristol Start The Bus
Friday 31st October Newcastle Cluny 2
Saturday 1st November Glasgow Simple Things Festival
Wednesday 19th Nov Leeds Brudenell Social Club (album launch party)